Korean American Books

Summaries and reviews of fiction and nonfiction books by Korean American authors,
books about Korean Americans and Korea, and Korean literature in English translation,
including some academic works and a sampling on the Korean War

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Forgotten Country by Catherine Chung

Catherine Chung's acclaimed debut novel (a Booklist Starred Review, among other terrific press) earns its accolades with elegant prose and a story of an immigrant family. Set in both America and in Korea, Janie's complicated relationship with her missing sister, Hannah, stands as a metaphor for Janie's own complicated relationship with her parents and with her identity. The story examines the loyalties in family love, how they originate and how they evolve and affect each family member. Much of what makes this book sing is Chung's gorgeous writing and sensitivity to the subtle, and the leaps from a tiny moment of emotion that expands its meaningfulness to the universal, regardless of one's country of origin. 

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